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I'm Lev. That's my face next to this message, appearing in your inbox for the very first time. I'll be your student rabbi for this year.

I watched recently as you said a teary farewell to your rabbi of five years, Lisa. Last week, your outgoing (student) rabbi, Tali, handed me the yad on your bimah. I read from your Torah and ceremonially joined your community.

In this week's parashah, Moses hands over to Joshua. Moses and Joshua understand that all power really lies with the community, so Joshua is given authority by the leaders of the kehillah. When Joshua takes on leading the Israelites, he sets up the system of judges, where power is distributed among everyone in the community.

Synagogues exist because of their members. People decide that they need each other and they are stronger in groups. I have been so impressed by meeting your members.

Over the last few weeks, I've been starting to get to know your council, choir, staff, and people of all ages. I've been blown away by your good humour, great stories, and love of all things Jewish.

I am so excited to join you.

Shabbat Shalom

Student Rabbi Lev